By Dominique Jackson
Are you in charge of getting your company’s social media marketing up and running? Using social media to grow your business, generate leads and build a brand may seem like a huge task, and in some ways it is. But there are steps you can follow to improve your chances of success, which will help you take advantage of everything social media has to offer.
Whether you’re just getting started or have been active on sites like Facebook and Twitter, but haven’t had much success, follow these 21 social media marketing tips to propel you to the next level:
1. Create a Plan for Each Social Media Channel
If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. So many businesses make the mistake of blindly jumping into social media marketing without a strategy or plan.
If you can’t answer questions like “why are you on social media?” or “what social media platform features your target audience?” then it’s time to hit the reset button. Start putting together a plan in writing that you and your team can refer to when you need it.
Your social media plan should consist of mini-plans for each social media channel you expect to be active on. You’ll have a plan for your Twitter, Facebook and so forth.
If you’re just getting started, keep your number of active social networking sites to three or less. For most businesses, particularly small businesses, trying to tackle five different social media accounts often results in doing a mediocre job with little to no results.
2. Post Consistently
Sending out one Tweet per day just isn’t going to cut it. Certain platforms like Instagram and Snapchat don’t necessarily move as fast as Twitter or Facebook. This means you don’t have to publish as often. But you should still develop a routine posting schedule and be consistent.
This ties back in with your social media marketing plan. You should outline:
- How often you plan to publish on each social media channel
- What type of content you plan to publish
- Social media outreach publishing schedule (reaching out to influencers via social media)
Remember your followers are likely following hundreds or even thousands of other people. If you’re not publishing new content as often as the other accounts out there, it’s easy to get lost and forgotten.
3. Be Picky About What You Share
When it comes to figuring out what to share on social media, quality beats quantity. You want to publish content consistently, but it also has to be valuable. Quality content is:
- Relevant to your audience
One trend becoming popular that you should be cautious of is relying on tools that “suggest” content to share to your audience. Sometimes the suggestions are decent, but in most cases, you’ll end up with a lot of suggested content that isn’t very relevant or high quality.
These tools typically run based on keywords and data feeds. For example, if you’re searching for content related to “content marketing,” your results may include suggestions like this:
If you didn’t take the time to check the suggestions and just blindly added the posts, you’d be sharing content that’s not really helpful to your audience. Strive to share the best content, not just what’s immediately available.
One way to have a steady supply of fresh content is to create a list of sites in your industry or niche that are known to publish high quality content. Add them to an RSS reader like Feedly. Then you’ll have a dashboard full of the latest posts from sites you trust and know have relevant content that you can confidently share with your followers.
You can even integrate Feedly within the Sprout Social dashboard!
4. Use a Social Media Management Tool
If you’re using the native publishing platforms for Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn, you’re wasting time and being less productive. Social media management tools like Sprout Social make it a lot easier to:
- Publish content across multiple platforms
- Schedule posts in advance
- Collaborate with your team
- See all of your social media feeds from a single dashboard instead of logging into five different sites
- Track and measure your results
There are plenty of other benefits to using a social media dashboard, but those instances alone are more than enough to make the move. The casual user may be able to stick with managing their social media from their phones, but as a business, you need to use a tool that will allow you to be more efficient and strategic.